1 Dead, 2 Missing After Tugboat Sinks Near Tappan Zee Bridge | NBC New York

1 Dead, 2 Missing After Tugboat Sinks Near Tappan Zee Bridge

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A tugboat crashed into a barge on the Hudson River early Saturday, killing a crew member and dumping about 5,000 gallons of fuel into the water. Two others aboard the tug were missing and presumed dead. Michael George reports. (Published Saturday, March 12, 2016)

    A tugboat crashed into a barge on the Hudson River early Saturday, killing a crew member and dumping about 5,000 gallons of fuel into the water. Two others aboard the tug were missing and presumed dead.

    The 90-foot tugboat named Specialist hit a barge at around 5:20 a.m., near the site where the new Tappan Zee Bridge is being built, police said.

    Within minutes, it sank in more than 40 feet of water, officials said.

    "This was a loss of life and it is tragic, and our hearts go out to the families that had to hear that news today," Gov. Andrew Cuomo said at a news conference.

    Paul Amon, 62, of Bayville, New Jersey, who was aboard the Specialist, was killed in the accident, authorities said.

    New York State Police, the U.S. Coast Guard and fire and police agencies from Westchester and Rockland counties were searching for the missing crew members. Their names haven't been disclosed.

    The search was called-off for the night at about 9 p.m.

    The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation was on the scene addressing the fuel spill, and a spill team had been ordered to the site, officials said.

    "We don't expect at this time any long-term damage," Cuomo said of the spill. He went on to say: "So far we believe that we have it contained."

    The tugboat was pushing a barge down the Hudson when it crashed into a barge that is part of the bridge construction project, officials said. No one on that barge was injured.

    The Specialist had departed from Albany and was en route to Jersey City.

    The crash occurred near the scene of an earlier boat crash in 2013 that killed a bride-to-be and her fiancé's best man.

    That crash, which killed Lindsey Stewart and Mark Lennon, both 30, also involved a Tappan Zee Bridge construction barge. Victims' families have filed lawsuits against several construction companies in that crash. The Coast Guard and the state Thruway Authority, which is building the bridge, said the barge was properly lighted, although additional lighting was installed after the crash.

    The new bridge is to replace an adjacent aging span that now connects Westchester and Rockland County. Construction on the $3.9 billion project began in October 2013 and is expected to be completed by 2018.


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